Extractive Industries

Mining - Minerals

Since 2000 Tanzania has become one of the world’s fastest-growing gold producers (25-fold increase). It is now the fourth-largest producer in Africa (7.9%) after South Africa, Ghana and Mali. Gold exports rose from US$841 million in May 2008 to US$895 million in May 2009 and now represented nearly 40% of all exports at that time. Tanzania’s proven reserves are in excess of 1395 tonnes of gold and based on ongoing projects and developing mines there is still further resource potential. Although eclipsed by the rapid development of its gold resources, there are other significant mineral endowments. Diamonds, copper, a wide variety of coloured gemstones (including alexandrite, amethyst, aquamarine, chrysoberyl, cordierite, emerald, garnet, ruby, sapphire, spinel, tanzanite and tourmaline) and a range of industrial minerals are all produced. Diamond, copper and coal production decreased by 17.7, 23.7 and 44% respectively in 2008. Production of bauxite (4x), phosphate (3.5x) and gypsum (20x), however, increased markedly, although output is dwarfed by some other African nations, and only  represents about 1% of the total output in Africa. Tanzania has significant resources of uranium (>24,450 tonnes U3O8) and nickel (>1 million tonnes metal)


The Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) is Tanzania's national petroleum company, through which the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania seeks to deliver its petroleum policies, including the management of exploration and production licenses (source: Energy policy and planning in southern Africa).

As of June 2015, and following succesful exploration offshore (in particular, off the country’s southeastern coast), known natural gas reserves for Tanzania were estimaet at 55 Tcf, up from 46.5 Tcf as of June 2014, accoring to the Tanzanian energy and minerals ministry said (source).  Key gas fields include Songo Songo and Mnazi Bay.  According to the Mbendi website, "Tanzania, with its oil seeps, seismic and other data, shows strong hydrocarbon potential in its upstream oil industry sector. However, only 20 wildcat exploration and 8 development wells have been drilled in a 222,000 sq km area, and therefore Tanzania can be classified as underexplored" (source). 

2015 was a key year for legislative development relating to the country's petroleum sector, with three key Acts passed into law: the Petroleum Act 2015; the Tanzania Extractive Industry (Transparency and Accountability) Act 2015; and the Oil and Gas Revenues Management Act 2015.